Louisiana-born Dylan Scott is emerging as one of this year’s breakout Country music stars. Building on the success of his Top 40 single Crazy Over Me, Scott scored his first number one recently with My Girl. The success of that song has led to Scott releasing a Deluxe Edition of his self-titled debut album, adding three new tracks to the original 2016 track listing including his new single Hooked.
Musically Scott fits into the newer crop of Country music artists such as Chris Lane, Sam Hunt and Thomas Rhett. His southern drawl meets pop/Country melodies that incorporate elements of R&B and hip-hop. Predictably his music has caused an outcry from Country purists but really it’s a lot of noise about not very much. Scott, like many contemporary male Country artists, is aiming for a sound that transcends the Country genre in a bid for mainstream appeal. There’s nothing wrong with that and it’s hardly like Scott is making a secret of that fact either so people just need to chill out.
Dylan Scott opens with the singer’s biggest hit to date, My Girl. It’s easy to see why the song has become such a huge track for Scott. Lyrically and musically it’s hardly ground breaking or original but it has a real charm that is hard to resist. Scott’s deep voice has a touch of Josh Turner about it and it’s distinctive, which is what manages to elevate this otherwise ordinary song to something a bit more special.
The focus of this Deluxe Edition is the inclusion of three new songs. New single Hooked, which is co-written by rising stars Seth Ennis and Morgan Evans along with Lindsay Rimes, is the strongest of the three. It integrates an R&B vocal delivery on the chorus and it has a slow build that explodes into a memorable chorus. Sleeping Beauty is a track Scott co-wrote with Lee Brice and Matt Alderman. It’s a sweeping ballad that gives his voice a real opportunity to shine.
The final new track is Can’t Take Her Anywhere, which is reminiscent of Sam Hunt with some spoken word moments. The song finds its feet on the chorus, which is really strong, and it leans heavily into the R&B/Country hybrid that is prevalent in the genre at the moment.
Scott shines the brightest on the album’s more honest moments. There are a few too many ‘bro country’ moments on the record but when he’s able to let his vocal breathe such as on the fantastic Passenger Seat, you can hear something really special in his voice. Another fine moment is I Lost You, which actually has more in common with traditional country than the rest of the record. It’s a glimpse at what could lie ahead for Scott should he decide to embrace the roots of the genre.
Other highlights on the album include the moody Do You Think About Me, the down and dirty feel of Freak Show, and the loose sounding Rules, which is one of the moments on the record that steers away from the heavy production that sometimes hampers the collection.
With his debut album, and this new Deluxe Edition, Scott is setting out the foundations for what promises to be a long and successful career. It’s a fairly safe record that sticks to a very specific formula but I’m sure that’s going to be put him in good stead for his next album. I’d like to hear him take a few more risks and vary his sound a bit. He has a great voice so putting that in the spotlight with sparser production would benefit him.
Track Listing: 1. My Girl 2. Crazy Over Me 3. Lay It On Me 4. Ball Cap 5. Hooked 6. Sleeping Beauty 7. My Town 8. Beer Buddies 9. Passenger Seat 10. Can’t Take Her Anywhere 11. I Lost You 12. Do You Think About Me 13. Living Room 14. Freak Show 15. Back 16. Rules Record Label: Curb Records Release Date: 4th August 2017